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UPSC Civil Services Syllabus 2024, Preliminary Exam Scheme, Paper Pattern Details

UPSC Civil Services Syllabus

The UPSC Civil Services Examination (CSE) is one of India’s most prestigious and competitive exams. It is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) to recruit candidates for various civil services of the Government of India, including the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS), and Indian Police Service (IPS).

This year, UPSC released a notification to recruit numerous candidates for different positions in February 2024. The online application registration process started on 14 February, and the last date to submit the filled application form was 05 March 2024. The commission is expected to conduct the Civil Services Exam on 26 May 2024.

UPSC Civil Services Syllabus 2024

UPSC Civil Services Syllabus

Exam Organiser Name Union Public Service Commission (UPSC)
Exam Name Civil Services Examination 2024
Prelims Exam Date 26 May 2024
Last Date to Apply 05 March 2024
Article Category Syllabus
Official Website upsc.gov.in

UPSC Civil Services Examination Overview

The rigorous examination process consists of three main stages: Preliminary Examination, Main Examination, and Interview/Personality Test. Understanding the syllabus and exam scheme is crucial for aspirants to plan their preparation effectively.

Stage Type Details
Preliminary Examination Objective Type Two papers, each of 200 marks
Main Examination Written (Descriptive Type) Nine papers, including two qualifying papers and seven papers, counted for merit
Interview/Personality Test Oral 275 marks
Total Marks 2025 marks (1750 marks for Main Examination + 275 marks for Interview)
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Preliminary Examination

The Preliminary Examination serves as a screening test and consists of two papers of objective type (multiple-choice questions). The marks obtained in the Preliminary Examination are not counted to determine the final merit.

Paper I: General Studies (200 Marks)

  • Current events of national and international importance
  • History of India and the Indian National Movement
  • Indian and World Geography – Physical, Social, and Economic Geography of India and the World
  • Indian Polity and Governance – Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.
  • Economic and Social Development – Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector Initiatives, etc.
  • General issues on Environmental ecology, Biodiversity, and Climate Change – that do not require subject specialization
  • General Science

Paper II: General Studies (CSAT) (200 Marks)

  • Comprehension
  • Interpersonal skills, including communication skills
  • Logical reasoning and analytical ability
  • Decision-making and problem-solving
  • General mental ability
  • Basic numeracy (Class X level), Data interpretation (Class X level)

Note: Paper II is a qualifying paper with minimum qualifying marks fixed at 33%.

Main Examination

The Main Examination tests the candidates’ academic talent and intellectual traits. It consists of nine papers, of which two are qualifying papers of 300 marks each, and seven are counted for merit, totalling 1750 marks.

Qualifying Papers

  • Paper A: One of the Indian Languages to be selected by the candidate from the languages included in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution (300 marks)
  • Paper B: English (300 marks)

Papers to be Counted for Merit

  • Paper I: Essay (250 marks)
  • Paper II: General Studies I (250 marks) – Indian Heritage and Culture, History, and Geography of the World and Society
  • Paper III: General Studies II (250 marks) – Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International Relations
  • Paper IV: General Studies III (250 marks) – Technology, Economic Development, Bio-diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management
  • Paper V: General Studies IV (250 marks) – Ethics, Integrity, and Aptitude
  • Paper VI: Optional Subject – Paper 1 (250 marks)
  • Paper VII: Optional Subject – Paper 2 (250 marks)
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Interview/Personality Test

Candidates who qualify for the Main Examination are called for the Interview/Personality Test, which has 275 marks. The interview panel evaluates the candidate’s personality traits, including intellectual capabilities, social behaviour, and interest in current affairs.

Exam Scheme & Paper Pattern

Preliminary Examination

  • Two compulsory papers of 200 marks each.
  • Objective type (multiple choice questions).
  • Two hours duration for each paper.
  • Paper II (CSAT) is qualifying with a minimum of 33%.

Main Examination

  • Nine papers in total.
  • Two qualifying papers of 300 marks each (one Indian language and English).
  • Seven papers counted for merit, each carrying 250 marks.
  • Essay, General Studies (four papers), and Optional Subject (two papers).

How to Prepare for UPSC Civil Services Examination?

  1. Understand the Syllabus: Thoroughly understand the Preliminary and Main examinations syllabus. Focus on the core areas and regularly update yourself with current affairs.
  2. Structured Study Plan: Create a realistic and structured study plan. Allocate time for each subject and ensure to cover the entire syllabus.
  3. Regular Revision: Regularly revise the topics to keep the information fresh in your memory. Use summary notes for quick revisions.
  4. Practice Mock Tests: Regularly practice mock tests to understand the exam environment. It helps in time management and identifying weak areas.
  5. Stay Updated: Keep yourself updated with current events of national and international importance. Read newspapers, follow news portals, and use monthly current affairs magazines.
  6. Optional Subject Preparation: Choose your subject wisely based on your interest and expertise. Thoroughly prepare the optional subject as it significantly contributes to your total marks.
  7. Ethics and Essay: Give special attention to Ethics and Essay papers. Practice writing essays on diverse topics and work on your ethical decision-making skills.
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